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Maldives vs Bora Bora: Which is best?

Maldives vs Bora Bora: Today’s topic: which island paradise, the Maldives or Bora Bora, is superior? Both Bora Bora and the Maldives are wonderful places to visit if you want to fulfill your fantasies of swimming in azure seas, sunning on beaches of powdery white sand, and staying in luxurious resorts with overwater villas. French Polynesia is an archipelago that is located in the South Pacific Ocean, and Bora Bora is one of the islands that make up French Polynesia. 

The Maldives, on the other hand, is a tropical country that is located smack dab in the middle of the Indian Ocean and is made up of hundreds of tiny islands.

At first glance, these dream-worthy and exceptionally beautiful locations might appear to be equally appealing for discerning travelers; however, there are some significant differences between them that might have an impact on your vacation.

 After spending time in both the Maldives and Bora Bora on multiple occasions, I can share the following insights based on my experiences. To make things easier to understand, I’ll compare the following aspects of traveling to each of these destinations: ( Maldives vs Bora Bora: Which is best? )

Have you ever traveled to the Maldives or Bora Bora? If that’s the case, which of the two do you favor more? Leave a comment.

WEATHER

The seasonality and weather patterns in the Maldives and Bora Bora are completely different from one another. In the Maldives, the months of November through April make up the dry season, while the months of May through October make up the wet season. 

The months of May through October mark the dry season in French Polynesia (and, by extension, on Bora Bora), while the months of November through April are wetter. The geographic positioning of the Maldives and Bora Bora both play a role in determining their respective climates, but for different reasons. 

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Bora Bora is located further from the equator and during the winter months, the evenings can be a little chillier than they are in the Maldives due to its proximity to the equator. 

On the other hand, the Maldives experience year-round warmth due to its proximity to the equator (nothing too bad but you may need a sweater nonetheless). ( Maldives vs Bora Bora: Which is best? )

Maldives vs Bora Bora: Which is best?
Maldives vs Bora Bora: Which is best?

The months of January through April, when the weather in the Maldives is at its peak, are also peak tourist months (and skyrocketing hotel rates). June is when the monsoon season is at its height, although it lasts from May to October. 

Because there is not much to do on a rainy day other than drink, eat, work out, or scuba dive, it is in your best interest to stick to the dry season even though the prices are higher.

In recent times, the months of November and December, which are traditionally considered to be part of the dry season, have been characterized by a high degree of unpredictability.

The months of June through September, during which the climate on Bora Bora is at its warmest and driest, are the ideal time to go (but windy).

Nevertheless, this is the high season, which means that it will be crowded and that hotel rates will be at their highest. 

Shoulder season refers to the period of time beginning in May and ending in October, which both offer pleasant weather but at a lower cost and with less wind. May and October fall on either side of the peak season. 

While it is possible to travel to Bora Bora at any time of the year, the months of November through April are characterized by higher levels of humidity, cloudier days, and more frequent occurrences of tropical showers than other times of the year.

The only time of year when tropical storms are likely to strike Bora Bora is when El Nio is influencing the ocean currents. ( Maldives vs Bora Bora: Which is best? )

ACCESSIBILITY (GETTING THERE) 

The Maldives can be found to the southeast of India, and Bora Bora can be found smack dab in the middle of the Southern Pacific Ocean. It’s possible that you’ll spend a lot of time traveling between the two locations, depending on where you start. 

Bora Bora is easier to reach for travelers coming from the United States, Australia, and New Zealand, whereas the Maldives are more convenient for travelers coming from Europe, Asia, and Africa.  ( Maldives vs Bora Bora: Which is best? )

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To give you an idea of how long it takes, a flight from Paris to the Maldives takes approximately 10 hours, while a flight to Bora Bora takes approximately 20 hours.

It takes about 10 hours to get to Bora Bora and about 20 hours to get to the Maldives when departing from Los Angeles. 

If the amount of time spent traveling is a significant concern of yours, you should give serious thought to the accessibility of your destination. This will allow you to spend more time unwinding in paradise and less time in the air.

Having said that, it is important to highlight the following significant distinctions:

  • These days, there are a huge number of airlines that fly to the Maldives, making it possible to reach the country without any disruptions from virtually any part of the globe. This is especially the case if you fly with one of the airlines based in the Middle East, such as Emirates, Etihad, or Qatar Airways, all of which provide convenient connections to the Maldives (with multiple flights a day between their hubs and Male). 
  • There are some resorts in the Maldives that can only be reached by seaplanes, which only fly during the day, but resorts in the North and South Male Atoll, which are closer to the airport, can be reached by speedboat at any time of the day or night. This is also the case regardless of what time of day you arrive in the Maldives.
  • Because the island does not have any international airports, getting to Bora Bora will require more work on your part. To get to Bora Bora, you must first take an international flight to Tahiti (and there aren’t that many airlines that fly to Tahiti), and then connect to a domestic flight that takes about an hour and a half. 
  • Domestic flights to Bora Bora are only available during daylight hours and do not always coincide with international flights (which arrive or depart either very early in the morning or very late at night). Any trip to Bora Bora will include a stopover of one night in Tahiti, unless you choose an international flight that arrives in Tahiti early in the morning (at the beginning of your holiday) and departs Tahiti late in the evening (at the end of your holiday). This is not always a pleasant experience because Tahiti only offers mediocre hotels that are nothing to write home about. ( Maldives vs Bora Bora: Which is best? )

RESORTS

The Maldives and Bora Bora are both well-known for their high-end and extremely luxurious hotels. The Maldives are home to dozens of hotels that are among the world’s most luxurious, and the majority of them are constructed on their own personal islands. 

Bora Bora, on the other hand, is home to only four hotels that can rightfully be classified as true luxury resorts. These hotels are the Four Seasons, the St. Regis, the InterContinental, and the Conrad, and they are all situated on coral islands (motus) that are part of the island’s outer reef. 

It is impossible for the hotels in Bora Bora to compete with the level of luxury and service provided by the resorts in the Maldives, despite the fact that Bora Bora’s hotels are among the best in the world.

If you were to place the hotels of Bora Bora in the Maldives, they most likely would not be among the top 20 resorts that are available there (with the exception of the Four Seasons). 

The following are some of the most significant distinctions that can be made between the resorts in the Maldives and those in Bora Bora:

The majority of the resorts in the Maldives are newer and better maintained, in contrast to the resorts in Bora Bora, which are older and are starting to show signs of their age.

In contrast to the resorts in the Maldives, which are frequently design heavens and architectural jewels that will knock you off your feet, all of the accommodations in Bora Bora are decorated in a traditional Polynesian style, which may appear to be a little out of date.

When compared to their often palatial counterparts in the Maldives, the overwater villas in Bora Bora come across as having a decidedly less luxurious and spacious atmosphere.

The overwater villas that are available at one of my top-choice resorts in the world, Soneva Jani, simply cannot be topped by anything else.

When you’re in the Maldives or Bora Bora, the restaurants at the resorts you’re staying at will provide the majority of your meals.

As a direct consequence of this, a significant number of guests at both locations opt to buy a meal plan offered by their resort, which allows for significant cost reductions. 

The resort restaurants in Bora Bora are very good, but they are never truly excellent. On the other hand, dining in the Maldives is almost always an exceptionally refined culinary experience that is supervised by chefs who have received Michelin stars. 

For instance, Soneva Fushi in the Maldives has some of the most exquisite restaurants in the world, the most luxurious settings, and the most attentive staff I’ve ever encountered at a resort. I’ve had some of the best meals of my life there.

When compared to the lavish breakfast buffets found in the Maldives, the ones found in Bora Bora are decidedly below par and leave guests with a distinct impression of deprivation. ( Maldives vs Bora Bora: Which is best? )

SCENERY AND BEACHES

There are some subtle differences in the topography of the Maldives and Bora Bora that account for the fact that different tourists have different preferences regarding which of these two islands is more appealing to visit.

One of the most beautiful islands in the world is called Bora Bora. The island is encircled on all sides by a magnificent lagoon, a barrier reef, and a number of motus (islets) comprised of pieces of broken coral and sand.

Mount Pahia and Mount Otemanu, two imposing mountains that were once part of an extinct volcano, can be found in the geographic center of the main island.

 Bora Bora’s Mount Otemanu, which stands at an elevation of 2,835 feet (727 meters), is home to one of the most famous vistas on the entire planet.

Because of this, the majority of high-end hotels (with the exception of the Conrad), are oriented toward the mountain in order to provide guests with a comprehensive view of the dramatic natural scenery.

The Maldives, in contrast to Bora Bora, are devoid of any mountainous terrain. It is an archipelago that floats in the Indian Ocean and is composed of approximately 1,200 coral islands of low elevation.

Each of these islands has the atmosphere of a deserted paradise; they are covered with verdant palm trees, surrounded by a coral reef, and have a shallow lagoon in the middle.

The majority of vacation islands offer breathtaking vistas of the emerald sea that are unobstructed. Bora Bora, on the other hand, may be just a tad bit more beautiful (if that’s even possible), given that the Maldives are relatively featureless.

The term “quality” of the beaches is another distinction that can be drawn between Bora Bora and the Maldives. The resort beaches in Bora Bora are made of coral sand, which is not very soft, and there are some rocky parts along the shoreline. 

Despite their stunning appearance and incredible picturesque quality, the coral sand beaches are not very comfortable to lie on. On the other hand, the Maldives are known for having some of the world’s finest, whitest, and most delicate sand, which is sure to captivate your attention. ( Maldives vs Bora Bora: Which is best? )

ACTIVITIES

Whether you decide to go to Bora Bora or the Maldives, there are many different ways to unwind and take in the breathtaking scenery.

Bora Bora is a destination that draws thrill-seekers because it provides a plethora of fun things to do on land, in the air, and on the water.

Water activities include canoeing around the lagoon, world-class scuba diving, and some of the best snorkeling in the world (which frequently includes the opportunity to interact with whales, manta rays, and even blacktip reef sharks). 

Hiking in the mountains or exploring the interior of Bora Bora by quad can be done on the main island, which is only a short boat ride away from most of the resorts on the island.

Every itinerary should also include riding in a helicopter while taking in the breathtaking scenery of the island. 

The majority of the excursions on Bora Bora are guided tours (either private or shared with other guests), and they either take half a day or an entire day to complete.

In comparison, the Maldives provide a narrower selection of activities, all of which are coordinated by the hotel or resort at which you are staying (there are only few excursions as the islands are spread far apart from one another). 

That is not necessarily a problem given that the majority of people who travel to the Maldives do so with the intention of unwinding on a remote tropical island, immersing themselves in a surreal setting, and taking advantage of the high level of privacy available there. 

However, if you want to get your blood pumping, there are a number of activities you can participate in, the majority of which are centered on the incredible marine life that the archipelago has to offer. Due to the warm water, high visibility, and abundant marine life, including manta rays and spotted whale sharks, snorkeling and diving are popular activities among visitors to the islands.

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